Chryst helped oversee his urgent rise to stardom and, despite mounting critics, is eager to defend a 2014 season during which many feel Kaepernick regressed.
"Last year, you're playing with some different sets of challenges," Chryst said, via the San Jose Mercury News. "There was more change within the offensive line than he had experienced the last couple of years. How does that affect your production as a quarterback? You're behind more often in games. How does that affect your production as a quarterback? I cite the fact that we had six touchdowns nullified by penalty. You plug that back into his formula, he really wasn't ... he didn't regress off his line as much as perceived."
Kaepernick was most certainly a puzzling case in 2014. He had a career high in passing yards and his completion percentage improved. That being said, he tossed more interceptions, fewer touchdowns and took 13 more sacks than he did the previous season.
Chryst sounds like he's blaming this largely on the offensive line and on some ill-timed penalties.
If Kaepernick wasn't just a two-year wonder, there's no question the perception of the 2015 49ers changes. Though the team lost a crippling amount of talent, it's easy to forget how dominant Kaepernick was early in his career. Was that player just a product of Jim Harbaugh magic, or are there greener pastures ahead in San Francisco?
Chryst has his hopes up.